The Importance of Gut Microorganisms
The Importance of Gut Microorganisms
We all have microorganisms within our body. They are present in our gut system and play a significant role. Microorganisms within the colon include bacteria, fungi, and certain viruses that are collectively called microbiota. The microbiota are majorly involved in physiological and ongoing developments.
Therefore, understanding the importance of the gut microorganisms can help you become more mindfully towards self-care for your health.
The importance of gut microorganisms
Scientists have called the gut system, the second brain. This second brain is actually the enteric nervous system or ENS, and it has a network of 100 million nerve cells. This amounts to more than the nerve cells present in the spinal cord or the peripheral nervous system.
Within this human gut, there are more than trillions of microorganisms. Your gut system consists of more than 30 neurotransmitters, including serotonin, norepinephrine, epinephrine, and dopamine. Also, it may interest you to know that 95% of your body’s serotonin is found in the bowels. And research has shown that serotonin dysfunction in the gastro tract can result in brain function impairment. This impairment involves your mood, sleep, and behavioral patterns.
There’s more as to why these microorganisms are so significant to us. Let’s take you through some of the reasons!
There are thousands of distinct bacterial species within the colon. Studies have also shown that the microbiota are involved in a complex network called the microbiota gut brain axis. This also involves the nerves in the walls of the GI tract, the autonomic nervous system, the neuroendocrine system, and the immune system.
The gut brain axis renders a two-way communication line between the brain and the intestines. The microbiota talk to the brain, using special chemical messages, while the brain responds to the gut via the vagus nerve and spinal nerves. Research suggests that brain development is dependent on a healthy presence of assorted gut microorganisms that colonize a baby’s intestines soon after birth.
The primary sources of these highly beneficial bacteria are present in the mother’s birth canal during natural childbirth. These bacteria are also present in the mother’s milk during breastfeeding.
However, babies born via C-section and babies that are bottle-fed have a different assortment of gut microbiota. This change of bacteria can affect their development and future health, majorly including behavioral health.
Furthermore, an important factor during the early stage of development is exposure of the baby (and later the young child) to antibiotics. This exposure can severely alter these vital organisms.
The gut system is an extremely powerful storehouse of microorganisms that fence off potential threats from gaining entry into your body’s circulation. This is because around 70% to 80% of your immune system is actually located inside your gut.
To obtain optimal health, about 85% of the bacterial gut should comprise friendly bacteria, like Lactobacillus or Bifidobacterium.
How to improve your gut system?
It’s interesting to know how your gut system can influence the way you feel, respond to stress, perceive pain, and behave. This is why a healthy gut is so important, which means you need to maintain the ideal microbiota within you.
This enteric nervous system can trigger major emotional shifts within a person who is dealing with constipation, stomach upset, bloating, and so on. Why does this happen? The GI system sends a message to the brain to trigger mood changes.
So, what’s the best way to ensure a healthy gut lives within you?
Commercial yogurts are not the way anymore as they are loaded with sugar and other additives. They are often heat processed or pasteurized, and this process destroys some of their live bacterial cultures.
So, supplementing your diet with probiotics can help to create a healthy balance within the gut. Do probiotics work? Yes, they do!
Probiotics help regulate the inflammatory process. A 2017 review in the journal Gut Microbes considers the use of probiotics a sound nutritional strategy for healthy aging.
However, you must be careful about the probiotics available at drugstores or grocery stores. These may not contain the bacteria listed on the label. Therefore, use high-quality probiotic products, which can benefit you more than with low-quality products.
In eating the right foods, you can maintain your health and your gut with thank you. You need certain bacteria to digest fiber. Post digestion, they produce short-chain fatty acids that are important for gut health. Fiber can help prevent weight gain, heart disease, diabetes and the risk of cancer.
We suggest that you limit your intake of foods that affect your gut microbiota, including artificial sweeteners, deep fried foods, and sugary foods. You can check out these 11 probiotic foods that will boost healthy living.
Maintaining a healthy gut is essential to your quality of living. So, make sure to always eat right and give your gut the necessary attention it needs for maintaining an assorted and ideal set of microorganisms.
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